Kimlin leaves Brumbies to sign French deal
Versatile ACT Brumbies big man Peter Kimlin will leave Australian rugby at the end of the Super Rugby season to test himself in Europe.
Kimlin has signed a one-year deal, with an option to extend his stay, with French club Grenoble.
The 27-year-old said the chance to live and play abroad was the determining factor in his decision to leave Canberra after a decade in the Brumbies program.
Kimlin grew up in the capital, made his Super Rugby debut at Canberra Stadium in 2007 and played his first Test for the Wallabies in Canberra against Italy in 2009.
But he said it was the right time to leave, despite admitting the Brumbies were building a "special group" capable of chasing a Super Rugby title.
"It was extremely hard to make the decision," Kimlin told The Canberra Times.
"I started in the Brumbies Academy with Laurie Fisher in 2002 so it's been a long career for me here.
"The last two or three years that going to Europe first entered my mind and it was just going through some processes.
"It was tough to make the decision, but I think if I looked back in 10 years and didn't take this opportunity I'd wish I'd taken it."
Grenoble is fast becoming an international home-away-from-home for ex-Brumbies.
They already have Ben Hand, Anthony Hegarty and Henry Vanderglas on their roster with Dan Palmer and Kimlin joining them next season.
Kimlin still hopes he can force his way back into the Wallabies squad before leaving if he continues his strong start to the Super Rugby season.
The Brumbies have started the season with back-to-back wins, beating the Queensland Reds in round one and toppling the Melbourne Rebels 30-13 at AAMI Park on Friday night.